Arrive in Kathmandu and transfer to the Hotel. No meals included for this evening.
After breakfast there will be a full trek briefing. There may be time for last minute shopping or a little sightseeing before you transfer to the airport for the flight to Nepalganj. Located in the Terai (lowlands), the climate is sub tropical and the cool of our hotel will be a welcome relief.
Usually the flights to Dolpo are early in the morning as they are subject to good weather conditions. The spectacular flight takes around 40 minutes. On arrival in Juphal you will meet the trekking crew, and after lunch you’ll have an easy three-hour walk to our first camp in Dunai, the district headquarters.
You cross the river via a suspension bridge and follow the Thulo Beri River to its meeting point with the Suli Gaad River, which flows down from Phoksumdo Lake. The trail winds on beside and high above the river as we ascend the steep lush valley. We pass several small villages before crossing the Anke Khola, after which you will climb up to the campsite at Chepka.
You cross the river several times over the course of the day as you ascend through the narrow gorge. You will be high above the river and at other times right beside it as the trail takes us up through forests of bamboo and conifer. At some points the only way to keep your feet dry is to use the crude stepping stones put in place by locals – this can be treacherous! The valley opens up after lunch and the going gets a bit easier until you reach the bridge that takes us to the small settlement of Renje.
Day 6 - 7
You’ll spend the day here acclimatising. The clear azure lake makes a stunning setting for our camp and there will be time to visit Ringmo village and its interesting monastery. The lake and the trail above are featured in Eric Valli's beautiful film Himalaya.
Day 8 - 9
The valley to the Baga La is wide at first and begins with a gradual climb. The valley then narrows as you climb and the trail becomes very as we near the top of the pass. A final steep section brings us to the top of our first pass, the Baga La, marked by several rough cairns. The views are stunning as we can see ahead into Inner Dolpo. The descent is initially on a scree slope and descends alongside several moraines to a meadow known as Pelungtang. Your camp tonight is by the Poyon Chu.
Day 10 - 11
Heading down the valley you’ll pass the turn off towards Nangkhong and the more remote region of northern Dolpo. Our trail continues down the southern branch of the Tsarap Chu past Mondo village. You’ll cross a wooden bridge over the river and continue down the valley past Dorje Phorba gompa and Trangmar (Red Cliff). Further on is Ga Kar (White Mountain) village and the Crystal Mountain School. Finally you’ll reach the campsite near Dho Tarap village. The village is a maze of mud brick Tibetan-style houses and it is also the village featured in the film Himalaya. In the fields you will see the villagers dressed in their distinctive Dolpo striped aprons. If there is time today we can visit Ribo Bhumpa, the village monastery, which was rebuilt in 1955.
Now it’s time for the considerably more remote and exploratory stage of our trek, as we head west along the trail leading eventually to Jomsom. Some of the days will be long and there are several high passes. You will need to be willing to walk long days on difficult trails, as you trek through some of the most remote landscapes in Nepal. We may even change some of the campsites depending on the availability of water – so please be prepared to be flexible. Inner Dolpo has some truly awe-inspiring scenery as we cross a huge barren mountainous desert. Today we climb through Ship Chok, with its distinctive red gompa and then pass through Dho Roa. The broad valley narrows as we head towards the Chharka Pass. We camp in the valley below the pass with excellent views of the snow-capped Norbu Khola.
An early start as you cross the Chharka Pass. The trail follows the Tarpi Khola and switchbacks up to the pass. From the top we are surrounded by wonderful views; the high mountains of the Mukut Himal, and, towards Mustang is a line of broad white snowy peaks. As you descend, the valley opens out and follows a stream past yak herders' settlements. You’ll set up camp on a plateau, where the stream meets the Kehang Khola. You are now in Inner Dolpo and the scenery becomes increasingly barren as we walk through this breathtaking multi coloured mountainous desert.
Day 14 - 15
We follow the Thansan Khola along the valley which broadens into wide plains. The trail climbs through the yak pastures called Molum Sumdo (4,860m) and continues on to the crest of a ridge. The landscape here is remote Dolpo at its best. Stark, beautiful and high Himalayan scenery surrounds us and the colours of the mountains vary from shades of ochre and tan to green and purple. Continuing past several river junctions we camp tonight below the two passes we must cross tomorrow.
Day 16 - 18
It is our final day of trekking but the views are no less spectacular. From camp we begin by watching the sunrise over Dhaulagiri and Niligiri before climbing to a small ridge above camp. We then head directly south towards Jomsom, the district headquarters of Mustang and thus back to 'civilisation'. Jomsom is on the main Annapurna Circuit trail and so there are lodges, apple pie and beer! We will stay in a teahouse for our last night as we bid farewell to our trekking crew.
The flights from Jomsom to Pokhara are usually early in the morning when the weather is best. The spectacular 30-minute flight from follows the Kali Gandaki for most of the way. We usually have to change planes in Pokhara and we will have to wait here a while. The flight from Pokhara to Kathmandu takes just over 30 minutes and has great views of the mountains if it is clear. You transfer to our hotel for welcome and well-deserved hot showers!
A free day in Kathmandu for shopping or sightseeing.
After breakfast,depart transfer.